Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 20 credits / 30 HE credits
Air Traffic controllers are responsible for navigating aircraft and sustaining a safe and efficient traffic flow in a four-dimensional air space. They apply separation rules to keep aircraft apart from each other and their wellcoordinated work and complete awareness of risks have made possible the combination of increased traffic intensity and strong safety records. Rules and procedures make up a significant part of the work and the locus of this study was to examine how the air traffic controllers, employed at the Swedish state enterprise LFV, perceive their current set of regulations. At each Traffic Service Unit operators are equipped with two operations manuals, and a particular focus was put on the design, use and management of the manuals.
Furthermore, this study involved two observation sessions in two Air Traffic Service Units and twelve interviews with operators and domain experts. With the aid of the theory of Resilience Engineering, four essential functions have been identified in order to account for the underlying and interconnected functions behind rule implementation: monitoring, learning, anticipation and responding. Thereafter, each function has been divided into sub-categories that all are aimed to describe in what ways, individual as organizational, current rule management supports the air traffic controllers.
Based on the results of this study, it can be concluded that there is need for a reorganization of the set of regulations at LFV, and that the maintenance of the operations manuals has been reduced because of constrained resources. An additional factor, which complicates the possibility to change the procedures, is that a major part of the content originates from international regulations. In addition, this thesis claims that safe and successful use of rules depends on more than the physical look and design of the operations manuals. Therefore, support of current set of regulations will be discussed in terms of document distribution, education, communication, purpose of procedures and approaches to rulefollowing.
2011. , 73 p.